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The City Council will consider appealing a requirement that it present annual updates on the progress of its recent settlement with the U.S. Department of Justice to a federal court judge at next Wednesday's meeting.


Mayor Charlie Hales and Commissioner Amanda Fritz have filed an ordinance authorizing the appeal of the condition imposed by U.S. Circuit Court Judge Michael Simon when he approved the settlement agreement. The ordinance does not challenge any other provision of the settlement, which requires the Portland Police Bureau to reduce its use of excessive force when dealing with the mentally ill and make other changes.

"This appeal does not challenge the settlement that four stakeholders — the U.S. Department of Justice, the City, Portland Police Association, and Albina Ministerial Alliance — agreed to. The City and the Police Bureau are fully committed to the reforms outlined in the settlement agreement. Chief Mike Reese, our next chief Larry O’Dea, and the entire bureau remain dedicated to continually improving the service our police officers deliver to the community. This resolution authorizes a narrow appeal to clarify the judge’s role in the implementation. We all want to move forward, get out of court and get to work,” Hales said in a Friday morning press release.

But Jason Renaud of the Mental Health Association of Portland says the council should reject the appeal.

"Mayor Hales has taken every opportunity to delay, diminish and disregard the settlement agreement in DOJ v City of Portland. Today's proposal to council to appeal Judge Simon's modest requirement for annual reporting on progress of the settlement to the court should be rejected by Council members. Persons with mental illness have been admittedly harmed by Portland's police and after three years of dawdling there is still no independent assurance anything has changed," Renaud wrote in a Friday morning press release. "Without timely redress, justice is again effectively denied."

The ordinance and the rest of next week's council agenda will be posted on the City Auditor's website between noon and 1 p.m. Friday at www.portlandonline.com/auditor/?c=26997

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